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Alternative and Action Counseling


port orchard washingtonAlternative and Action Counseling Review

Founded in 2004,  Alternative and Action Counseling is a mental health agency with two facilities in Washington state, one in Spanaway and one in Port Orchard. Serving clients in Pierce and Kitsap counties, both locations offer state-certified chemical dependency programs. Alternative and Action Counseling has substance abuse outpatient and Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP), comprised of group and individual therapy. Other services include DUI and Domestic Violence (DV) groups, Victim Impact Panels (VIP), an Alcohol Drug Information School (ADIS), anger management courses, gambling assessments with treatment and family law assessments.

Treatment and Staff

Upon intake, clients undergo a substance abuse assessment which can take up to 90 minutes to complete. Court-ordered clients are required to have court documents, a police report and their case history at intake. Those who require an assessment or an evaluation to fulfill family law requirements are eligible to do so at both facilities.

Staff and clients work together at an initial individual counseling session to develop an individualized treatment plan. IOP requires clients to attend individual or group counseling three times a week as well as two sober support groups a week. They are also required to submit to urinalysis more frequently in IOP than outpatient, an average of once a week. IOP requires clients to complete between 26 and 55 individual or group counseling sessions, whereas standard outpatient only requires attendance of individual or group counseling once a week. Clients are required to attend 13 to 26 sessions to complete outpatient. Staff follow 12-step principles in treatment, but do not formally consider them the basis of IOP and outpatient treatment. On Tuesday and Thursday, both facilities offer on-site 12-step groups for recovery support. Substance abuse counseling is largely comprised of evidence-based practices such as CBT and Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy (REBT) to address triggers and negative behaviors detrimental to each client’s long-term recovery.

The goal of group counseling is to provide clients with substance abuse education and new coping skills for sobriety. Special groups include VIPs for DUI/DWI offenders to hear from victims of DUI damages (held every other Friday from 5 to 7 pm for 90 minutes) and ADIS, held every other Saturday for eight hours. Clients must be court-ordered for ADIS, having already received substance abuse assessments to participate in these groups. Other groups include the Men’s Domestic Violence Group, Women’s Domestic Violence Group, Chemical Dependency Group and a Relapse Prevention Group, which is offered every day of the week for 13 to 26 weeks.

The Spanaway facility offers clients gambling assessments, grief and loss counseling and a Marijuana Awareness Program; both groups are six weeks in length. Gambling addictions services are state-funded and supported through the Evergreen Counsel on Problem Gambling.

The staff at both facilities are CADCs licensed by the Washington State Department of Health, many of whom are in recovery themselves.


Aside from the above, the facility has a Two-Year Deferred Prosecution program that requires individual and group counseling weekly. The Employer Assistance Program requires clients to attend six to 26 sessions of individual and group counseling sessions each week. Staff at Alternative and Action Counseling work with agency Human Resources departments to help employees receive treatment.

In Summary

Alternative and Action Counseling offers a plethora of groups that address substance abuse simultaneously with other issues like domestic violence. While evidence-based treatment is the foundation for the outpatient treatment programs, clients also have access to the 12-step recovery experience in the same location. In all, Alternative and Action Counseling is a worthy choice for many seeking treatment for addiction.

Alternative and Action Counseling Locations

Alternative Counseling
17002 Pacific Ave
Spanaway, WA 98387

Action Counseling
729 Prospect St, Ste 200
Port Orchard, WA 98366

Alternative and Action Counseling Cost

$620 (30 days). Reach Alternative and Action Counseling by phone at (253) 538-2323 (Spanaway) and (360) 895-1307 (Port Orchard). Find Alternative and Action Counseling on Facebook and Google+

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